The Graham Potter era at Stamford Bridge has already begun to face scrutiny from some circles as Chelsea struggle to find form under the former Brighton boss in recent weeks, and a key weekend clash on Tyneside against high-flying Newcastle could make or break the first half of the 2022-23 Premier League season for the Blues.Open in new window
Currently on a four-match winless run (0-2-2) on the back of frustrating losses against Brighton and Arsenal in the last two Premier League matchdays, some have begun to ask if Potter was the right man for the job to take over for the departed Thomas Tuchel as Chelsea continue to struggle in front of goal despite the wealth of talent in the senior setup. A win against Newcastle could see them climb as high as fifth; a credible posting before the break. But a loss on the road, their third on the bounce, could see them fall as low as tenth depending on the results.
Predicted Chelsea XI
Players unavailable for selection & key fitness updates
N’Golo Kanté, Wesley Fofana, Kepa Arrizabalaga, Ben Chilwell, Reece James, Carney Chukwuemeka, Jorginho (doubt)
Graham Potter will go into a key weekend for Chelsea on the back of a cadre of fitness concerns that sees the former Brighton boss stripped of a number of key figures in the senior setup.
The Blues remain without N’Golo Kanté, Wesley Fofana, Kepa Arrizabalaga, Ben Chilwell, and Reece James, with the quintet all out until after the 2022 World Cup which cost at least four of them a place in their respective national team camps.
Youngster Carney Chukwuemeka is also out with a hamstring problem, while Italian veteran Jorginho is not expected to feature after picking up a foot injury that he likely will not recover from in time.